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Lucas said in a speech to health workers: “Te cur- rent free-for-all in which anyone can manufacture, sell or get hold of drugs needs to end — through proper regulation, strict controls on who can buy what and when, and ending the criminal control of drug markets,”


Speaking about her constituency, she said: “…our experience shows that prohibition and abstinence don’t work – and we want to try something different.”


Tis is not a green light for the cannabis coffee- shop model of Amsterdam to move into Brighton but a serious attempt to reduce the social and indi- vidual harms that drug use in an unregulated mar- ket fosters.


Te Government – right the way up to David Cam- eron and Nick Clegg (whose constituency is Shef- field and whose party, the Liberal Democrats have just voted to make it party policy to decriminalise all drug use) - as well as other public figures of im- portance, such as Judge Goldsack, need to be look- ing at what other areas of the country are doing to tackle the problem that sees “six out of fourteen” court cases being brought against cannabis grow- ers. It also needs to take responsibility by looking towards the rest of Europe, and the world,


, which is taking a more liberal stance on so called “soſt drugs” and seeing a reduction in the use of all drugs. In Holland, for example, heroin use has re- mained stable since the introduction of a cannabis- tolerating policy in 1974. Here in the UK, heroin use has skyrocketed 2,000 per cent in the same time. Instead of cannabis looking as dangerous as heroin, it seems that the message being sent out and received is that heroin is as soſt a drug as can- nabis. Te ACMD simply do not support this view.


For CI Bob Chapman to claim that the crackdown in Sheffield “…will not only have a positive effect within the community [and] prevent serious crim- inality from gaining a foothold” – aſter taking into consideration the social and scientific evidence presented ¬– I believe shows that his stance is one of morally-based policy obligation.


ISMOKE | 51


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